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Submission + - T-Mobile Eliminates Cheaper Postpaid Plans, Sells 'Unlimited Data' Only (arstechnica.com)

An anonymous reader writes: T-Mobile USA will stop selling its older and cheaper limited-data plans to postpaid customers, shifting entirely to its new "unlimited" data plans that impose bandwidth limits on video and tethering unless customers pay extra. To ease the transition, T-Mobile will offer bill credits of $10 a month to customers when they use less than 2GB per month. T-Mobile began its shift to unlimited data plans in August with the introduction of T-Mobile One, which starts at $70 a month. While there are no data caps, customers have to pay a total of $95 a month to get high-definition video and mobile hotspot speeds of greater than 512kbps. The carrier said in August that the unlimited plan would be "replacing all our rate plans," including its cheaper plans that cost $50 or $65 a month. Nonetheless, T-Mobile kept selling limited postpaid data plans to new customers for a few months, but yesterday CEO John Legere said that as of January 22, T-Mobile One will be the "only postpaid consumer plan we sell." Existing postpaid customers can keep their current plans. For new customers, T-Mobile will presumably keep selling its prepaid plans that cost $40 to $60 a month and come with 3GB to 10GB of data. T-Mobile also said yesterday that it will start including taxes and fees in its advertised rate when customers sign up for new T-Mobile One plans and enroll in automatic payments, essentially giving subscribers a discount. "The average monthly bill for a family of four will drop from $180.48 to $160, according to a company spokesman," The Wall Street Journal reported.

Submission + - CES 2017: Talk to the Fridge (but will Alexa or Google answer back?) (ieee.org)

Tekla Perry writes: CES 2017 is turning into the battle of the intelligent agents: Alexa, with a head start, is everywhere; Google Assistant isn't out of the game though. Siri, however, stayed home. As to where these chatty agents will be hanging out in your home it turns out that they are no different than most people you invite to your parties--you'll find them in the kitchen.

Submission + - Google Bans AdNauseam Chrome Extension, the Ad Blocker That Clicks on All Ads (bleepingcomputer.com)

An anonymous reader writes: Google has banned the AdNauseam Chrome extension from the Chrome Web Store, an add-on that became very popular with users because it automatically clicked on all ads on a page, which prevented advertisers from building profiles on the extension's users.

Google didn't provide any in-depth details about why it did so, only saying that "An extension should have a single purpose that is clear to users," but the AdNauseam team suspects the extension's purpose might have played a role in having their product banned, which they say contradicts "Google’s business model."

Nevertheless, when Google bans a Chrome extension, it also takes proactive steps that prevent users from updating or re-installing the add-on. This mechanism helps Google ban malware-laced Chrome extension, but it can inadvertently serve as a tool to blackball developers or any unwanted add-ons.

Users that want to bypass Google's ban and install the AdNauseam extension can do so by following this tutorial that shows them how to load the extension using Chrome's Developer Mode. The AdNauseam Firefox and Opera extensions remain standing, and the AdNauseam source code is available on GitHub.

Submission + - US Federal Trade Commission sues D-Link for having terrible security (betanews.com)

Mark Wilson writes: D-Link is facing a lawsuit brought against it by the US Federal Trade Commission for the poor security of its routers and connected cameras. The FTC says the company failed to take reasonable steps to protect users from hackers.

The FTC is seeking to improve the security of all IoT (internet of things) devices in the wake of compromised devices being used to launch high-profile DDoS attacks such as Marai and Leet Botnet. D-Link argues that the charges brought against it are "unwarranted and baseless" and plans to "vigorously defend itself".

The Taiwanese company says that the FTC "fails to allege, as it must, that actual consumers suffered or are likely to suffer actual substantial injuries".

Submission + - Qualitative Improvement in North Korean Missiles (reuters.com)

schwit1 writes: The United States said on Thursday North Korea had demonstrated a “qualitative” improvement in its nuclear and missile capabilities after an unprecedented level of tests last year, showing the needed to sustain pressure on Pyongyang to bring it back to disarmament negotiations.

U.S. Deputy Secretary of State Antony Blinken told a joint news conference after a meeting with his Japanese and South Korean counterparts that North Korea had conducted 24 missile tests in the past year, as well as two nuclear tests, and learned from each one.

“Even a so-called failure is progress because they apply what they have learned to their technology and to the next test. And in our assessment, we have a qualitative improvement in their capabilities in the past year as a result of this unprecedented level of activity,” he said.

“With every passing day the threat does get more acute,” Blinken said, and referred to comments by North Korea’s leader, Kim Jong Un, on Sunday that his country was close to test-launching an intercontinental ballistic missile (ICBM) of a kind that could someday hit the United States.

Submission + - Possibly fatal blow against a patent trolls. (computerworld.com)

whoever57 writes: Patent trolls rely on the fact that they have no assets and, if they lose a case, they can fold the company that owned the patent and sued, thus avoiding paying any the defendant's legal bills. However, in a recent case, the judge has told the winning defendant that it can claim its legal bills from the law firm. The decision is based on the plaintiff's law firm using a contract under which it would take a portion of any judgment, making it more than just counsel, but instead a partner with the plaintiff. This will likely result in law firms wanting to be paid up front, instead of offering a contingency-based fee.

Submission + - CES 2017 Brings Smart Bikes, Smart Lampshades and AI Toothbrush

Mickeycaskill writes: Headlining now at CES 2017: A home security system that doesn't use cameras, a smart bicycle with touchscreen display and a patio umbrella with the intelligence to rotate toward the sun at all times.

These are but three of thousands of new and intriguing products that debuted Jan. 3 at the International Consumer Electronics Show, which is ingesting Las Vegas through Jan. 8.
An estimated 177,000 attendees have flooded the city of 603,488, boosting the number of inhabitants by a whopping 28 percent for most of the week.

Some of the world's largest tech firms will show off new TVs, home products, smartphones, and a few oddities as well. Silicon has rounded up five of the most innovative.

Submission + - Bug Bounty Problem Looks To Secure In-Flight Wi-Fi

Mickeycaskill writes: The prevalence of in-flight Wi-Fi has grown significantly over the last 12 months, improving the travel experience for millions of flyers around the world. However, it has also possibly introduced a new set of security risks for airlines.

The likelihood of a cyberattack has been disputed but in an attempt to stay one step ahead of the hackers, in-flight internet and entertainment provider Gogo has launched a bug bounty program for both its ground-based public website and its airborne systems.

Researchers will need to be on the look out for security vulnerabilities in the systems – which are used by customers to browse the web, view on-demand video content and watch live TV – with a focus on “ensuring the credit card transaction page is secure.”

Gogo has signed a deal with British Airways to provide in-flight Wi-Fi for long-haul flights, adding to its existing agreements with Delta and Virgin Atlantic.

Submission + - SPAM: Jet of magma faster than first thought

Coisiche writes: A jet of magma in the Earth's core is moving faster than first thought; moving at the speed of 45km a year. There seems to be a ring of faster moving magma running east-west around the geographic north pole. Detected by the European Space Agency's three Swarm satellites this magma "jet stream" is running in the opposite direction to its atmospheric equivalents.
Link to Original Source

Submission + - The Freedom of the Net Remains in a Declining Trend Around the World (andrewprozes.com)

andrewprozes writes: Freedom House – the nonpartisan NGO that engages in research and advocacy on democracy, political freedom, and human rights – recently released its newest overview of the state of freedom on the Internet around the world. I’m a Board member at Freedom House, so this is something I’m quite focused on, and the topic is also important to me in the context of my work more broadly. It’s vital that the Net remains free, and it’s something that all of us ought to be mindful and even vigilant about.

Submission + - Over 1,800 MongoDB Databases Held for Ransom by Mysterious Attacker (bleepingcomputer.com) 1

An anonymous reader writes: An attacker going by the name of Harak1r1 is hijacking unprotected MongoDB databases, stealing and replacing their content, and asking for a 0.2 Bitcoin ($200) ransom to return the data. According to John Matherly, Shodan founder, over 1,800 MongoDB databases have had their content replaced with a table called WARNING that contains the ransom note.

Spotted by security researcher Victor Gevers, these databases are MongoDB instances that feature no administrator password and are exposed to external connections from the Internet. Databases owners in China have been hit, while Bleeping Computer and MacKeeper have confirmed other infections, one which hit a prominent US healthcare organization and blocked access to over 200,000 user records.

These attacks are somewhat similar to attacks on Redis servers in 2016, when an unknown attacker had hijacked and installed the Fairware ransomware on hundreds of Linux servers running Redis DB. The two series of attacks don't appear to be related.

Submission + - Congressman Scott Peters Speaks On Congress Banning Live Streaming (ibtimes.com)

An anonymous reader writes: California Congressman Scott Peters pushed back against new House rules package passed on Tuesday that will impose fines against representatives who live stream or take photos on the House floor. The Congressman said he was willing to pay the fine if that's what was required to provide the public with necessary access.

Submission + - OPEN-SOURCE PARAMETRIC CAD IN YOUR BROWSER (hackaday.com)

mmiscool writes: Until recently, computer-aided design (CAD) software was really only used by engineering companies who could afford to pay thousands of dollars a year per license. The available software, while very powerful, had a very high learning curve and took a lot of training and experience to master. But, with the rise of hobbyist 3D printing, a number of much more simple CAD programs became available.

While these programs certainly helped makers get into 3D modeling, most had serious limitations. Only a few have been truly open-source, and even fewer have been both open-source and parametric. Parametric CAD allows you to create 3D models based on a series of parameters, such as defining a cube by its origin and dimensions. This is in contrast to sculpting style 3D modeling software, which is controlled much more visually. The benefit of parametric modeling is that parameters can be changed later, and the model can be updated on the fly. Features can also be defined mathematically, so that they change in relation to each other.

While still in its infancy, JS.Sketcher is seeking to fill that niche. It is 100% open-source, runs in your browser using only JavaScript, and is fully parametric (with both constraints and editable dimensions). At this time, available features are still pretty limited and simple. You can: extrude/cut, revolve, shell, and do boolean operations with solids. More advanced features aren’t available yet, but hopefully will be added in the future.

Jsketcher is available on git hub
https://github.com/xibyte/jske...
and can be used form the following url.
http://web-cad.org/

Submission + - BlackBerry's DTEK50 fails to raise the security bar (review) (zdnet.com)

An anonymous reader writes: BlackBerry's DTEK50 is a passable smartphone that was in most cases able to match the security features of other similarly secure devices, like Apple's iPhone and Google's Nexus. But the DTEK50 was not able to outperform or raise the security bar in any meaningful way. In part because of that, we dispute the company's claim that this is the "most secure Android smartphone."

Submission + - South China Sea conflict could be IT's Black Swan (computerworld.com) 1

dcblogs writes: The vast majority of the world’s electronics — its servers, PCs, mobile phones — are now manufactured in China. This means any inadvertent escalation over the on-going South China Sea territorial dispute could do more than raise geopolitical tensions. About 84% of the world’s electronics are made in Asia, and about 85% of those goods are made in China, said Michael Palma, an analyst at IDC. “All that product flows through the South China Sea,” said Palma. Headlines about military activities in the region appear frequently. Just this month, Vietnam moved rocket launchers within striking distance of China’s military positions. Recent photographs show new aircraft hangerson China’s islands that are believed to be for fighter aircraft. “The South China Sea dispute is indeed a serious security issue of global significance because it has the potential to lead the world into war,” said Linda Lim, a professor of strategy at the Stephen M. Ross School of Business at the University of Michigan and a China and Southeast Asia expert.

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